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All Articles For Cloud of Witnesses

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Prof. Hanko is professor of Church History and New Testament in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Controversy In His First Charge From the day Hoeksema entered the ministry in 14th St. Christian Reformed Church in Holland, Michigan to the day he died, his life can be characterized as one of controversy. It has been alleged that his controversy-filled life was due to his own constant efforts to “pick a fight.” He was, so it has been said, willing “to go to the mat” for anything and everything. This is a grievous slander and one which will not stand the scrutiny of...

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Prof. Hanko is professor of Church History and New Testament in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Introduction God had preserved His church throughout the dark and dreary Middle Ages when apostate Rome controlled the life and consciences of men. He had preserved His church through the Waldensians hiding in the valleys and caves of the Alps to escape the brutality of the Inquisition. He had preserved His church through faithful followers of the two Johns: John Wycliffe and John Hus. But the institute of the church was corrupt and the saints of God had no place to go with their children...

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  Prof. Hanko is professor of Church History and New Testament in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Conclusion It is hard to imagine the amount of work which Herman Hoeksema produced. But this was and is true of many whom God uses in His church. They spend themselves in the cause of the gospel and do work that indeed derives its power from heaven. Hoeksema was, above all, a preacher. It is difficult for us to understand how anyone who heard his preaching could leave his congregation. He was clear, concise, biblical, and confessional. A little child could understand him; an...

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Prof. Hanko is professor of Church History and New Testament in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Introduction Although some time ago we spent time in England in the early days of the Reformation, we left England after meeting only a few men and returned to the continent of Europe to talk with men there, men who were deeply involved in the Reformation in Switzerland, Germany, and the Lowlands. It is time now to return for a while to the British Isles, only this time we shall travel to the northern part, that part called Scotland. We have already been there once,...

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Prof. Hanko is professor of Church History and New Testament in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. The Progress of the Reformation We cannot, in this brief biographical sketch, give a detailed account of Luther’s work. It is possible to mention, and then only in passing, some of the outstanding events. Although the upheavals in Europe over Luther’s theses soon came to the attention of the pope, Rome was not immediately perturbed by these events and dismissed the whole matter as “a monks’ quarrel.” But it was far more than that, and even Luther did not know the extent of it. But...

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Prof. Hanko is professor of Church History and New Testament in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Introduction When Karl Barth was preparing a series of lectures on John Calvin, he wrote to a friend: Calvin is a cataract…I lack completely the means, the suction cups, even to assimilate this phenomenon, not to speak of presenting it adequately. What I receive is only a thin little stream and what I can then give out again is only a yet thinner extract of this little stream. I could gladly and profitably set myself down and spend all the rest of my life just...

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Prof. Hanko is professor of Church History and New Testament in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Calvin in Strassburg After a brief stay in Basel, Calvin went to Strassburg, a city in southern Germany where the Swiss reformation had already taken root. The three years he spent in this city were probably the happiest years of his life. He had no need to fight a Council, no need to oppose a stubborn people at every turn of the way, no need to do battle with enemies on every side. He had peace and quiet, time for study and writing, opportunity to...

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Prof. Hanko is professor of Church History and New Testament in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Introduction Presbyterianism was established in Scotland only after bitter struggle. If Andrew Melville, whose life we discussed last time, was the father of Presbyterianism, Alexander Henderson, more than any other, was responsible for fixing it firmly in the kirk of Scotland—although even after his life the struggle continued for some few years. The Stuart kings were on the throne of Scotland, all of them strong proponents of the divine right of kings and eager to be the absolute monarchs which their predecessors had been. Specifically,...

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Prof. Hanko is professor of Church History and New Testament in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Introduction All students of church history are agreed that from the time of the apostles to today the history of the church of Christ has never seen two greater assemblies than the Synod of Dordt and the Westminster Assembly. It is a surprising thing that they were both held in the first half of the 17th century—indeed that they were held within 25 years of each other. The times must have been particularly important or dangerous for the church of Christ, for God to give...

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Prof. Hanko is professor of Church History and New Testament in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Introduction I recall that a number of years ago, when we were on a tour of Westminster Abbey in London, the Anglican, prelate who was our guide took every opportunity to express his hatred of Oliver Cromwell and the disaster which he had brought upon England in the 17th Century. Oliver Cromwell was that kind of a man: one either loved him or hated him. His enemies were many and were from the side of those who supported the Anglican Church as well as Calvinist...

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